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College Counseling

Role of the Parent/Guardian

So as to ensure a student-centered experience aligned with the values of a Sacred Heart education, the Parent pledges to:
  • Read closely the College Counseling Handbook (Gator Guide), become familiar with the tools on Scoir, read all mailings and emails from the SHP College Counseling Office, and attend workshops/programs hosted by the SHP College Counseling Office.
  • Be candid about the parameters of the college search. At the earliest possible opportunity, your child and the SHP College Counselor need to know any and all factors that may affect your student’s ability to attend a particular school, including, for example, financial need or distance from home.
  • Be encouraging, supportive, optimistic, and realistic, offering advice and guidance when appropriate.
  • Celebrate your child's many accomplishments.
  • Help your child recognize key inherent inclinations and character traits, and which colleges may best fit those.
  • Be open to new suggestions and even “unfamiliar” colleges. Help your child understand that there is more than one college at which they will thrive.
  • Complete the SHP Parent Questionnaire by the deadline. The information you share is extremely helpful as counselors prepare and craft a comprehensive letter of recommendation for your child. Please take the time to answer the questions as honestly and completely as possible, illustrating your assertions with appropriate anecdotes and specific examples.
  • Listen to what your child is saying about the college process and serve as a sounding board. Note what your child is not saying just as attentively.
  • Avoid insisting on your preferences or conveying your biases regarding college choices. Remember, if someone other than the student makes the college decision, any student unhappy with that choice will likely blame those "significant others.” When parents resist the temptation to push, the child more readily seeks their advice in the end and will make a wise decision.
  • Not believe rumors about the college admission process, nor rely on rankings from publications, including US News and World Report. 
  • Think critically about information you may encounter online and/or have heard from members of the SHP parent community. When in doubt, verify with the SHP College Counseling Office.
  • Not to open up your student's private process to input from those who don't have professional experience of the process and more importantly, don't know your child as well.
  • Keep the lines of communication open with your child throughout the process.
  • Recognize that your child’s timetable for considering college options, filling out applications, etc. may differ from your own. While it is helpful to stay on top of the deadlines, it is just as important to allow the student to set the pace.
  • Support an ethical approach to the college application process. Students are expected to complete their own applications. Students packaged professionally look just like that... packaged.
  • Maintain a healthy perspective as well as a sense of humor.
  • Be in touch with your SHP College Counselor if you have any questions or concerns along the way. Not only are we happy to support you and serve as your sounding board, we are well equipped to dispel myths and misconceptions which may be causing you undue stress.

Sacred Heart Schools Atherton

Sacred Heart Schools, Atherton

150 Valparaiso Ave
Atherton, CA 94027
650 322 1866
Founded by the Society of the Sacred Heart, SHS is a Catholic, independent, co-ed day school for students in preschool through grade 12